Today here at Mature Minded Gamers we broke away from our computer screens and played a board game. Saddle up! because today we are talking about Western Legends by Kolossal Games. It is a choose your own play style Wild West centric game. You can play a variety of characters; some start you out on the lawful side, others the lawless side. You can still decide to go bad on all characters, but once your bad there’s no going back as they say. While choices did seem a little limited on what actions to take it did help streamline things that could normally bog down similar style albeit Heavier Titles such as Xia: Legends of a Drift System by Far Off Games.
You start off the game as a Famous or sometimes Infamous, Wild West Character. You are seeking Legendary Status and you must choose between two paths. Marshal (Lawmen) or Wanted (Outlaw). Each path provides multiple ways to earn Legendary Status (Victory Points) while limiting you on how you can interact with the world. Being an outlaw provides quick and easy Legendary Points every round, but you have to watch out for the Sheriff (A NPC) who is roaming the Country looking to bring Justice to the West. From robbing banks, stealing cash or cattle from your friends the West is not a safe place. As other players may be working with the Law trying to stop your nefarious deeds and bring Frontier Justice by way of creating their own Legend. Which bring us to the Lawmen. Fighting off countryside Bandits, transferring cattle safely to the train or arresting outlaws the lawmen life was never easy, and it isn't about to get any easier as legendary points do not come as quickly but are much less risky.
You can also just entertain yourself with poker, both with other players and the house if no one else is game. Each player looks at his hand of poker cards trying to make the best possible set with the river cards, all while staring your opponent in the eye trying to read his bluff. These cards are not only used for poker, but combat as well, so keeping that ace up your sleeve might be more valuable later.
Combat is straight forward and not a long drawn out affair or a dice fest. You and your opponent both lay down 1 poker card to decide the winner, high card wins. Most cards have other abilities, some are reactions to being played and others are actions themselves, which adds some fun and variety to combat. They do a good job of balancing the cards, lower value cards which are not good at winning fights, tend to have better reactions, thus giving some balance.
Quick, easy and stress-fully entertaining. The world does give other options that you can follow. Let’s not forget after working in the mines digging for gold, you can always sit back with a brew at the Local tavern and play some simplified Poker Mini-games or stop at the Local brothel to unload some of that extra cash. The west sure did have its perks.
The biggest complaint we had about this game was the component quality. Western Legends comes with a handful of miniatures. These are barely up to board game quality. Maybe if this game was made 15 years ago it would be amazing. But with other companies doing such a great job with miniatures these days like Fantasy Flight Games and CMON. I really think they need to up the quality on this one to justify the hefty price tag. The game comes with ALOT of cards. Standard card stock, while not bad, again I do feel this game especially the poker deck should have hard paper quality upgraded to linen finished cards. Also included in the game is a little cardboard general store, which is basically a tray that holds all the things you can purchase/upgrade. I'm not sure if the board thickness was not where it needed to be or if the quality of board, but it seemed flimsy, my guess is the later.
Video Game Comparison:
This game does draw a-lot of Comparisons to Red Dead Redemption from Rockstar. Be the hero or villain you have always wanted in the wild west. Go anywhere do anything! While not as detailed with options that Red Dead provides it does well in immersion into a Wild West world.
Western Legends provides some great story elements that change every game through a relatively simple card system. Cards are activated after a certain action or when ending your turn on a certain type of location. Mature Minded Gamers, encourages you to check out Western Legends by Kolossal Games. Grab some brews, slide a few aces up your sleeve and just ask yourself one question......... You feeling Lucky?